The ‘New’ Rule of 3: 5 tips For The Kitchen


The origin of the “Rule of Three“, was used in reference to writing.  The claim is that characters, when brought on the scene in sets of three, are able to execute the story more effectively as well as with a greater ability to keep a reader engaged. (Key phrases: execute more effectively, keep engaged)

The Rule of Three, is also applied in card games pertaining to the number of times one should shuffle the deck before ending up receiving the same cards as in your previously dealt hand. <<Remember that one<<

Taking these methods into consideration, I personally have found that the “Rule of Three” can be used effectively in our lives as well. With this principal; you should be able to keep clutter at bay, making sure you don’t end up in the same situation as before.

Let me explain.

The “New” Rule

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To introduce the new rule, we’ll begin in the “heart of the home“, also known as, the kitchen. This is where the most memories are made, but also where some of the biggest messes and largest amounts of clutter can happen.

The basic concept of the rule, is keeping, bringing in  and letting go of things in 3’s.

Below, I’ve created a short list to assist in beginning the process and give you an idea of how to incorporate this ‘New’ Rule of Three.

The Rule of Three: Kitchen Edition

1. Keep 3 small appliances you absolutely cannot live without. Who uses more than that on a regular basis?

  • For example; a coffee maker, blender and crockpot

2. Get rid of 3 small appliances you never or rarely ever use.

  • A cake pop maker, popcorn maker or other specialty appliance you only use once a year, if that.
  • Some use specialty appliances on a more regular basis.  In that case, make sure you have ample storage room to keep it organized and easily accessible. Also consider replacing what you have with smaller versions.

3. Have no more than: 3 plates, bowls, cups (including tea glasses, coffee mugs, sports bottles ), spoons, forks, etc. per person in your home.

  • If you’re a collector, include only one of your collectable dishes, or sets, from your collection, otherwise buy a curio cabinet specifically for displaying these.  If they are never seen or used, they have no purpose other than  collecting dust and taking up space.  Sorry.
  • If you have less than this amount, GREAT!  The idea is to have no more than 3 of each item per household member. This way, you don’t end up with too many dirty dishes. (Note: if you have big kids, this can help get them into washing their own dishes *wink*)

4. Only keep 3 dish towels, 3 hand towels and 3 pot holders: if one gets dirty, you’ll have two left until you wash it.

  • We all end up buying seasonal themed linens at some point.  Make sure two of them are neutral colors.  The one left, can be a seasonal one you can switch out.

5. Cleaning products: now this one can vary depending on your preference to cleaners.  Still, the purpose is to have no more than three for the kitchen.  (Do we really need more than that?)

  • For natural preference; vinegar, baking soda, natural dish soap
  • No preference; a multi-surface cleaner, dish soap, bleach cleaner
  • Personal preference; a multi-surface cleaner, dish soap, S.O.S pads

This list is just the basics to get you started.  Hopefully it will help you get to the point where your kitchen is easier to maintain and less likely to be a huge mess of clutter with extra items you don’t need.

I hope you enjoy this list and that you’ll put it into practice yourself.  I’m actually having a lot of fun doing it myself and BONUS: my husband thinks it was the best idea ever for our home!

Let me know how your kitchen reorganizing goes and whether or not the ‘New’ Rule of Three worked for you. You can also check out my post on “Learning to Live With Less“.

I apply the technique all over our home. You can see how it’s accomplished in the bathroom here, as well as the kids bathroom.

If you’ve completed this part of decluttering your kitchen, you can read about the rest in my posts “Full Kitchen Cleanout” and “Part 2: Decluttering the Kitchen”.

Subscribe to my email and send me a message, or leave a comment on the blog post.  I’d love to hear any ideas you have to share that work for you as well.  You can also follow me on Facebook or Pinterest by clicking the button for each.  Let’s get busy simplifying our lives and finding the Joy that awaits us!

4 thoughts on “The ‘New’ Rule of 3: 5 tips For The Kitchen

  1. I think it’s a good rule, I’ve gone down to a dish of each per person in our house and it does help with dishes. Only problem I ran into was when company came over lol. So I now have 2 different sets of dishes (thanks to my sister) and only one set is allowed to be used in less we have company, and so far that has worked well. Can’t wait to hear the next one!

    1. See, the Rule of three, helps cut down on the dishes, but also leaves room for when you have guests. Try throwing out all but the 3 per person and see how that works out!

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